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Rothfuss Family Singers to Perform at Wofford

Wednesday, October 01, 2003

SPARTANBURG, SC – It will be a family affair at Wofford College on Thursday, Oct. 9, when the Rothfuss Family Singers bring their popular operatic performances to campus. Two performances – a morning convocation and an evening presentation – are both free and open to the public.

The Rothfuss Family will perform a mixture of arias during the 11 a.m. convocation in Leonard Auditorium. At the 7 p.m. performance, they will present a “miniature” version of the opera “The Marriage of Figaro,” also in Leonard Auditorium.

Guy Rothfuss, his wife, Julia Kemp, and their three grown children – all professional opera singers – make up the Rothfuss Family Singers. Rothfuss and Kemp both have enjoyed opera careers in Germany, where they raised their three children. They moved back to the United States in 1994.

Rothfuss, a tenor, is a graduate of Lycoming College and studied at Westminster Choir College in Princeton, N.J., and the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. During the past 30 years, he has had more than 1,400 performances in the opera houses of Paris, Amsterdam, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Munich, Frankfort, Barcelona, Covent Garden in London, and Vienna. He has established himself as Europe’s premier tenor for modern operatic works.

Kemp, a soprano, is a graduate of Westminster Choir College, and studied at the Curtis Institute and the Academy of the West in California, where she was among the last students of legendary soprano Lotte Lehmann. For 23 years, she was the leading soprano with the German opera houses of Kiel and Osnabruck, singing more than 1,000 performances of more than 60 different roles. She now is on the faculty of Westminster Choir College.

The Rothfuss children have followed in their parents’ footsteps. Kristin Rothfuss earned her master’s degree from the University of Southern California. In 2000, she was named “Young Artist of the Year” by the National Association of Teachers of Singing in Los Angeles. She made her professional debut singing in the world premiere of On Gold Mountain in the Los Angeles Opera, and last year debuted with the San Jose Opera Company.

Katja Rothfuss made her opera debut at age 8. She attended Mansfield University and the Westminster Choir College. She made her American professional debut in 1998 singing with the Savannah Orchestra. She teaches elementary music.

Bryan Rothfuss also made his opera debut at age 8. He is a graduate of Wolfgang University and studied voice with the world-famous Walter Berry.

“The Marriage of Figaro” performance is a one-hour narrated version of Mozart’s masterpiece comedy about love in which two young servants succeed in frustrating the lecherous designs of their master.